Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Viktor & Rolf at the Barbican Part 1

I must confess. I wasn't a fan of Viktor & Rolf before seeing their exhibition at the Barbican. And now of course I'm a convert! They are over the top without being costumey. The clothes are bold and in your face confident but feminine at the same time.

Excuse the pics (as photos are not allowed) and the quality (as they are not allowed I used my mobile...sneaky sneaky).

V&R dollhouse..oh how I would love a dollhouse like this one! Each doll is styled according to how the models were made up during the actual runway show of the garments.

I am not sure if all off Viktor & Rolf's runway shows are represented in the exhibition but it's certain there are enough for you to marvel at. The shows are played on video with life size mannequins (dolls rather because there are so coquette!) showcasing the best looks of the collections. Below is my fave. The Russian doll collection modelled by Maggie Rizer. Checkout the mannequin's hair ala Maggie!

What amazes me is the vision the two designers have. They have the ability to identify their inspiration for a collection that is unique and not dictated by fashion's pendulum often followed by designers in order to make it in the business. The interpretation of their inspiration is conceptual yet never literal. Also, the clothes are always so maginificent I do not blame the affluent couture ladies for buying them and not using them at all. They are works of art! Here's what they said on the Russian Doll Collection:

Russian Doll

In the winter of 1999 we appeared on the cat walk ourselves to dress a single model, Maggie Rizer, in nine layers of jewel encrusted dresses. After each layer, the small pedestal on which Maggie stood would rotate, giving the audience an opportunity to see a particular set on her before the next layer was laid on. When the final veil had been draped around her, Maggie was carrying approximately 70 kilos of richly decorated textures on her shoulders.

We intended this presentation as an ode to exclusivity and unavailability, the things that give fashion its aura. Once occluded by the next layer, the previous layer remained present on stage, but impossible for the audience to see.

As I am a new member of the club, what better way would it be to be inducted than seeing Viktor & Rolf this Saturday at the Barbican! As it is London Fashion Week, the duo are coming into town for a symposium and to announce the winner of an internship with their design house. Tickets are sold out but there will be some left at the entrance on the day itself. So rise and shine, and start fashion week with V&R! If you're not that lucky, just admire the exhibition which will be on show until September 21.

PS. Thought bubble while staring at the mannequins aka dolls...Their heads are too big for their long and lithe bodies! In real life you can't be stick thin with fleshy cheeks! Oh I guess that's all part of the fantasy...

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